This past December, members of the River Edge PBA Local 201 collected a variety of toys during the annual Toy Drive to benefit families in Monmouth County's Union Beach which was hit hard by Hurricane Sandy's destructive forces.
"This year we delivered toys to Union Beach in Monmouth County which got hit hard by Hurrican Sandy," REPD Officer Joseph Zemaites said. Zemaites is also the Vice President of PBA Local 201. "The destruction was unbelievable."
In prior years, the majority of donations have been delivered to Bergen County Head Start, a program for underprivileged children based out of Bergenfield, and the Audrey Hepburn Children's House of Hackensack University Medical Center, for children of physical and mental abuse.
But following Hurricane Sandy's destruction up and down New Jersey, the PBA 201 chose to help out their fellow neighbors in Union Beach where the storm surge from Sandy left 1,600 of the town’s 2,100 homes damaged or destroyed. Included in the town's loss was a 150-year old Princess Cottage carved nearly in half and later torn down.
"PBA Local 201 would like to thank Apex Copy for donating the flyers, the River Edge Diner and the River Edge Library for allowing us to have drop boxes at their locations," Zemaites said. "Extra Space Storage for donating a storage unit to hold the toys until delivery, and Fairmount Truck Rental for donating a van so that we could transport all the toys.